What's Happening: June 2007

Sat, 06/30/2007 - 00:00
What's Happening in the Dressage World?
Roosevelt/Rosevelt at the 2006 Hanoverian Young Horse Championships :: Photo © Astrid Appels

Time to catch up on some news...

Reesink Horses and American horse owner Fritz Kundrun (better known as the sponsor of Sue Blinks' Flim Flam) acquired the Hanoverian licensed stallionRosevelt in the spring of 2007. The dark bay stallion by Rotspon out of a Lauries Crusador xx x Grande dam was a stallion performance test winner in Denmark and Sweden. He's currently still standing at stud in Sweden but changed owner in March. "Rosevelt will go in training with Hans Peter Minderhoud, who will prepare him for the qualifications for the World Championships for Young Dressage Horses," Patrick Reesink told Eurodressage.

Imke Schellekens-Bartels and window decoration company Hunter Douglas signed a contract to fully sponsor Imke and her trainer/mother Tineke Bartels for three years. Imke's top horse Sunrise, owned by the Smarius Family, will now be called Hunter Douglas Sunrise. Hunter Douglas is a multinational known for making Luxaflex, for instance. They will also sponsor Imke's horses OO Seven, Aachen, Voice and new youngsters Toscane, Aramist and Willow. "With Sunrise I want to ride the Olympic Games in Hong Kong and a candidate for the 2012 Olympics will be amongst the four youngsters," Schellekens said.

The CHIO Rotterdam has announced their intent to run the 2011 European Dressage Championships. The CHIO Rotterdam organisation will set up a plan to check if they can run the show and will apply as host with the FEI. Tineke Bartels, who is part of the organizing committee, stated that "organizing a European Championship in our own country is a good opportunity for further improvement of the quality of the dressage sport. The pre-Olympic year 2011 is a great opportunity. The last European Championships in The Netherlands were held in 1999 in Arnheim and we all remember the results of the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney one year later!" [Anky won her first individual gold medal]

Following outstanding performances at the CDI-P Le Touquet, Dutch pony riderAnne van der Weerd has been submitted to the Dutch pony A-team with her New Forest Pony Quatro. The 16-year old rider finished third in the Kur to Music in Le Touquet and will be riding the national Imperial Cup Finals at the CHIO Rotterdam on Sunday June 24, 2007. These finals are also the last selection trial for the Dutch pony riders to get qualified for the team for the 2007 European Pony Championships. The Dutch equestrian newspaper Paardenkrant reported that so far Angela Krooswijk with Power and Paint and Maria van den Dungen with Pan Tau B have been selected for the team. The other two team members are to be selected after the Imperial Cup Finals.

In Denmark a small uproar arose whenAndreas Helgstrand got misquoted in the German press that Blue Hors Matine would not be competing at the 2007 European Dressage Championships. The story started on Friday (June 15) when a P3 radio journalist reported on a story written on KunSport and mis-translated Helgstrand's words that Matine would not go to the European Championships. "The journalist called me and asked how things were going," Helgstrand said. "I'm generally very careful in making statements because I don't want to raise high expectations. That's why I said I can't guarantee her participation for a full 100%, but that I was surely planning to ride Matine at the Europeans." Helgstrand added that, "she's going well in training and we definitely expect her to be ready." The Blue Hors Stud rider will be competing Blue Hors Don Schufro at the Danish Championships in Broholm.

Dutch team trainer Sjef Janssen announced the Dutch team that will compete at the CDIO Aachen. He selected Anky van Grunsven (which horse not announced), Hans Peter Minderhoud with Exquis Nadine, Alex van Silfhout with Luxform’s Nimbly and Kisten Beckers with Broere Jazz.

British Dressage reported that top British amateur dressage rider Stephanie Croxfordand her husband Simon have had a baby girl. Annabelle Grace was born on Saturday, 16 June 2007, weighing 8lbs 7½ oz and mother and baby are doing well. Geochemist Steph is planning to take a year’s maternity leave from her full-time job as a specialist in purifying contaminated water. Steph, who had her most successful season last year with her grand prix ride Mr President IV, is hoping to return to the saddle soon. “I rode until the day before her birth and could have competed in a grand prix if I had been allowed to do rising trot. I came out of hospital yesterday and helped muck out, but I’m not quite ready to ride yet,” said Steph, whose 2006 successes include winning the Best Brit award at Fry’s CDI and scoring more than 70% in her first World Cup qualifier at Olympia.  

Wow, were we surprised to see the return to the spotlight of former successful Belgian youth rider Dorothy Raemdonck. She made her come back to the limelight not on horse back, but by winning the Miss Sports Belgium 2007 competition in Knokke, Belgium, June 2, 2007. The 28-year old Dorothy, who is a physiotherapist by profession, won the opportunity to donate almost 50,000 euro to the Ghent Children Rehabilitation Center. Dorothy Raemdonck was an extremely successful FEI pony rider in the early 90s. Aboard Valentino and especially Destry she was member of the Belgian pony team and later on competed for Belgium as a junior and young rider. In her career, she won two silver and one team bronze medal at the European Championships. She currently still has four horses but only rides for recreation. In the 1990s Dorothy and her brother Laurence Raemdonck were two of the strongest Belgian youth riders on the scene. (Related story dating from: 1997). View a photo of Dorothy as Miss Belgium Sports.